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Friday, February 28, 2020

The Teaneck Stingrays Soccer Club achieved a tremendous milestone last week when the U12 Stingrays defeated Manhattan Soccer Club Fury 4-0 at Randall’s Island. With this win, our local team won the EDP Division 1 Championship–the highest level regional league that includes teams from New Jersey, New York and Connecticut.

Despite the very cold and windy weather this past Sunday, the U12 Stingrays had the support of a large group of parents and siblings as they faced the #4 team in New York. Although MSC Fury had the local advantage and came out very aggressively, the Stingrays’ strong defense, led by Karmel Segui, Daniel Yankovich, Uri Gulich and Elijah Hope, did not allow the home team any opportunities to score. The Stingrays’ forward, Kyle Linhares, scored the first goal of the game in a fast-paced counterattack that caught the Fury defenders completely unprepared. Kyle also scored the second goal from a free kick just outside the penalty box despite the strong wind coming from the river.

This great win came on the heels of a very successful performance at the Columbus Day tournament hosted by the Brooklyn Italians’ club in Coney Island. The Stingrays finished this tournament in second place in the highest-level Gold bracket after winning against teams that came from as far away as Montreal. Unfortunately, they lost the final 2-1 in overtime.

As EDP champions and Brooklyn Italian finalists, the Teaneck Stingrays are currently ranked #8 in New Jersey and #36 in the US, bringing pride and recognition to Teaneck. The team’s success illustrates the dedication and success of Ian Glover, the Stingrays’ full-time director of player development. Most of the children on this team started playing soccer in the Stingrays’ Mighty Rays program as 6 year olds, and developed over time into a cohesive, committed and successful team.

While this is only one example of the many successes of the Teaneck Stingrays teams, our children’s success is not only due to physical conditioning and training. I believe that the best qualities that our children are learning include the sense of fairness and proper behavior instilled by Ian. He always tells the kids that whether we win or lose, we are representing Teaneck and we need to play fairly and behave properly at every game. Importantly, the Stingrays organization provides our children with a unique opportunity to be part of the larger Teaneck community and to learn about other cultures in one of the best integrated organizations in town.

The Teaneck Stingrays have teams in all age groups, starting with the Mighty Rays (5-6 years of age), the 5v5 League (6-8 years of age), and competitive travel teams from U8 to U14 in the NSCA, MAPS and EDP leagues. If you would like more information about the club or would like to sponsor a team, you can reach Ian at [email protected] or visit www.TeaneckStingrays.com. You can also reach the author and proud father of Uri and Eric (members of the Yavneh’s champion soccer team in the 2013-2014 season) at [email protected]

By Adrian Gulich